Street Smart Chicago

Lollapalooza’s Green Street: The Official Guide to the Festival’s Face of Social Responsibility

Events, Green No Comments »

For Newcity’s coverage of the music of Lollapalooza, click here.

Illustration by Chuck U

Illustration by Chuck U

Since its debut in 1991, Lollapalooza now ranks as one of the nation’s premier rock festivals with eight stages, 130 bands, and 270,000 fans over three days. While known for the diverse musical lineups, the festival has been a platform to support social change and environmental stewardship from day one.  Today, Green Street is the festival’s face of social responsibility, offering more than your average festival shopping experience.

Lollapalooza’s home for greening initiatives, hand-selected art vendors, non-profit organizations and farm-to-festival fare, Green Street aspires to leave an impact far beyond the festival alone. Whether selling repurposed or ethically sourced goods, all vendors have proven values that align with Lollapalooza’s. The Lolla Cares organizations support surrounding and international communities with causes ranging from health advocacy to sustainable living to fighting poverty at home and abroad. If that’s not enough, Green Mountain Energy and Rock & Recycle represent the many festival environmental initiatives and Lolla Farmers Market features small-batch food businesses from the Chicago area. Read the rest of this entry »

The Heart of a Festival: Environmental Efforts at and by Lollapalooza

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Part of the Official Guide to Lollapalooza’s Green Street

ROCK & RECYCLE PROGRAM

Rock out, recycle and win a free commemorative Lollapalooza t-shirt, cool swag and a chance to win a Lollapalooza bike. Visit one of the four Rock & Recycle centers throughout the park for more details.

Recycled Paper Greetings puts a fresh spin on the classic card. They pioneered the use of recycled paper in the greeting card industry and continue to print more than eighty million cards annually on recycled paper. Recycled Paper Greetings is committed to sustainable practices and is very proud to be the sponsor of Lollapalooza’s Rock & Recycle program where you can earn free stuff for recycling.

TREAD LIGHTLY ON THE ENVIRONMENT

Over the past six years, C3 Presents has worked with Green Mountain Energy to track and offset Lollapalooza’s carbon footprint. Read the rest of this entry »

The Three-Dollar Deal: What It Means To Be A Carbon Offset

Green No Comments »

GreenMountain_FestBoothPart of the Official Guide to Lollapalooza’s Green Street

By Josh Kovensky

How much carbon do you emit in a given day? Between a combustion-powered commute and an AC-filled summer, from a solitary camping trip to a transcontinental flight, the numbers vary wildly. High-octane events, like Lollapalooza, can pump carbon into the atmosphere, while even incidental activities (riding the El, for example) contribute to an overall passing of atmospheric gas.

If you plan on going to Lollapalooza, you can neutralize this by engaging in Lolla’s Tread Lightly program. Lollapalooza, in partnership with Green Mountain Energy, is offering a three-dollar carbon offset to help the average concertgoer reduce his chemical footfalls among the melodic hubbub. Green Mountain Energy, normally a renewable power provider, wheels and deals in carbon offsets as well, all for the benefit of Lolla’s concertgoers, and for the environment that we all share. Read the rest of this entry »

Lollapalooza Green Street: Art Market

Events, Green No Comments »

GreenStreet-ArtMarket

Part of the Official Guide to Lollapalooza’s Green Street

The Art Market vendors, located in Green Street North and South, sell repurposed or ethically sourced goods. Read the rest of this entry »

Lollapalooza Green Street: Lolla Cares

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Part of the Official Guide to Lollapalooza’s Green StreetGreenStreet-Lolla_Cares.4x8Lolla Cares organizations, located in Green Street North and South, support surrounding and international communities with causes ranging from health advocacy to sustainable living to fighting poverty at home and abroad. Read the rest of this entry »

Lollapalooza Green Street: Farmers Market

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Part of the Official Guide to Lollapalooza’s Green Street

GreenStreet-Farmer_Mkt.4x8

Lolla Farmers Market, located in Green Street North, features small-batch food businesses from the Chicago area. Read the rest of this entry »

Checkerboard City: Divvy-ing Up Public Space

Bicycling, Checkerboard City, Green, Wicker Park No Comments »
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Bike-share user Richard Hurh at the Smoke Daddy Divvy station/Photo: John Greenfield

By John Greenfield

The 32nd Ward’s Scott Waguespack is a good guy, and he’s one of Chicago’s best aldermen. A key independent voice and reformer, he’s sort of the Eliot Ness of City Council. He made headlines for leading the opposition to Richard M. Daley’s much-hated parking-meter contract, as well as Rahm Emanuel’s fishy reboot of the deal. Waguespack is generally a strong supporter of sustainable transportation, and he bike commutes regularly—he’s been doored or struck by cars on multiple occasions.

It’s a bummer when a politician you respect is on the wrong side of an issue you care about. So I was distressed to read quotes from the alderman that seemed critical of Chicago Department of Transportation initiatives that convert car parking spaces to productive uses like Divvy bike-share stations, on-street bike racks and “People Spots” seating areas. “Bike shares, People Spots … what will that do to businesses?” he asked at a community event this spring. Read the rest of this entry »

Checkerboard City: The Izakaya Express

Checkerboard City, Food & Drink, Green, Transit 3 Comments »
Ned Abdallah, Jaclyn Thomson and Tony Koneko at Yoshino / Photo: John Greenfield

Ned Abdallah, Jaclyn Thomson and Tony Koneko at Yoshino/Photo: John Greenfield

By John Greenfield

Sometimes transportation and food intersect in curious ways. On July 3, I received an odd phone call from Mako Koneko, co-owner of Torishin, my favorite izakaya (Japanese pub-eatery) in Mount Prospect. This northwest suburb, along with Arlington Heights and Elk Grove Village, is home to the region’s largest Japanese expat community. The tavern was a popular place for salarymen to hang out after work over drinks and delectable bar snacks, expertly prepared by her husband Toshiro “Tony” Koneko, a native of Niigata prefecture who’d worked there for decades.

Mako told me that Torishin recently folded after Tony moved to Rochelle, a small factory town in north-central Illinois, to cook at a new restaurant catering to Japanese employees at the Nippon Sharyo railcar plant. This news greatly disappointed me but, on the bright side, she invited me to an opening party the next day for the first Midwest branch of Ramen Misoya, a Japan-based soup chain, which was launching in the former izakaya space. I’m a huge fan of quality ramen, so it was a consolation that a noodle shop was replacing the beloved pub.

With no pressing Fourth of July plans and lured by the promise of free chow, I bicycled seventeen miles from Logan Square to the open house. You can view my route at tinyurl.com/RamenRide. When I arrived, there was a line out the door and almost everyone was speaking Japanese. Mako declined to discuss the details of Torishin’s demise, but she translated while I interviewed Yu Furukawa, the North and Latin America manager for the soup chain, which has fifty branches worldwide. Read the rest of this entry »

Checkerboard City: Paving the Way for Safe Routes to School

Bicycling, Checkerboard City, Green 1 Comment »
Genaro Escarzaga / Photo: Martha Williams, BikeFancy.com

Genaro Escarzaga/Photo: Martha Williams, BikeFancy.com

By John Greenfield

In 1969, more than fifty percent of American children walked or biked to school, but by 2009 less than thirteen percent did so. This lifestyle change has been a major factor in skyrocketing childhood obesity rates, an epidemic that has been particularly severe in Chicago’s low-income neighborhoods. The Safe Routes to School movement is working to reverse that trend by making it safe, convenient and fun for kids to walk and bike to school. I recently sat down with Genaro Escarzaga, the Active Transportation Alliance’s Safe Routes to School coordinator, to discuss the work he’s doing to help launch Safe Routes programs in twenty-five Chicago public schools. 

Tell me about the Safe Routes initiative you’re managing.
It’s a part of Healthy CPS [an action plan with sixty strategies to improve the health of students]. In September of 2012, the Office of Student Health and Wellness at CPS received $4.38 million from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention as part of the Healthy Chicago Initiative [the city’s public health agenda with the goal of making this “the healthiest city in the nation”]. Read the rest of this entry »

Checkerboard City: What About Bob?

Bicycling, Checkerboard City, Green, News etc., Politics, South Loop No Comments »
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Bob Fioretti by the Dearborn protected bike lanes./Photo: John Greenfield

By John Greenfield

Second Ward Alderman Robert “Bob” Fioretti got a raw deal in last year’s ward remap. His district currently includes portions of several neighborhoods on the Near South and Near West sides, but in 2015 his territory will flip to the Near North Side, which means he has to win over a whole new set of voters in the next election.

Perhaps because he has an uphill reelection battle anyway, lately he’s had no qualms about going against the mayor’s wishes on issues ranging from charter schools to the renegotiation of the city’s reviled parking-meter contract. As part of a series of interviews with aldermen about their view on transportation issues, I recently had coffee with Fioretti downstairs from his law firm, a stone’s throw from the Dearborn protected bike lanes. Read the rest of this entry »